(This post is a part of a series entitled “Kate’s Favorite Sabre Competition” in which I am choosing my 2007/08 favorite Sabre by process of elimination. Each and every Sabre is a hero, but in the end, there can be only one favorite.)
Before I delve too deeply into the third round of Favorite Sabre cuts, I have something to say: I’ve been feeling quite guilty about my early dismissal of the delightful Jochen Hecht. In retrospect, he deserved better, and I wish that I had kept him around for a few more rounds. But what’s done, is done. I don’t think Yo-Yo was going to go the distance anyway, so all his early exit means is a few extra days on the golf course, right? I don’t want to lead him on, only to disappoint him later when he is more emotionally invested. Jochen seems like he might take rejection pretty hard, and I hope he knows I was just looking out for his best interests. And again, just because I haven’t chosen him now, doesn’t mean he won’t become my Favorite Sabre the second the season begins. Let’s not forget, this competition is utter bullshit.
So without further ado,
In the third round I present to you a trio of men for whom I have feelings that are quite out of step with the average Buffalonian. Let’s meet them now….
Dmitri Kalinin #45
Oh, poor Dmitri Kalinin! When people around Buffalo aren’t bitching ruthlessly about his rotten defensive prowess, they are speculating on the fragile state of his psyche. Sweet, sweet Dmitri is prone to devastating lapses of confidence that effect every aspect of his play….or at least that’s what they say on AM 550; and this is the problem as I see it for Dmitri Kalinin. I mean, honestly, can life get more undignified than when Schopp and the Bulldog are speculating about your mental health?
I am a professional violist. Playing music for a living certainly isn’t as stressful as playing hockey, but I can relate on some level to buckling under the pressure to perform. I genuinely feel bad for this poor guy. Here he is, clearly struggling, and the whole town is angry and disappointed, and he’s letting everyone down, and the more he tries, the worse it gets, and it’s all just a vicious cycle.
Sadly, a desire to mother Dmitri really doesn’t translate well into holding him up on a pedestal as my Favorite Sabre, so I have no choice but to eliminate him from the competition. I am cutting him from the competition, but I do so with tremendous love and tenderness in my heart. Dmitri, just because you’re not my Favorite Sabre, doesn’t mean you aren’t a great guy. Seriously. If you ever need to talk, you know where to find me. I’m here for you, buddy.
Andrew Peters #76
Petey’s job, as far as I can tell, is to punch people. In regular life, he would be called an “asshole”, but in hockey, he is called an “enforcer”. Accepting the idea that fighting is a genuine part of the game was one of the most startling tasks for me as a beginning hockey fan. I am the child of Minnesota hippies. We do not punch. We talk it out. Discovering that I have a taste for hot guys punching each other has been….borderline alarming, to be honest.
The thing I like about Andrew Peters is he really doesn’t seem like a tough guy. He actually seems like a little bit of a clown….a cocky clown, but still, a harmless goofball at heart. People in Buffalo LOVE to complain about how much he sucks at skating, and I’m sure he does, but if he sucks so bad, why are the Sabres keeping him around? It would seem that they are keeping him around because everybody in the organization really likes him……and that makes me like him a little too. I think that instead of punching, Petey’s primary role is to be a good teammate and to keep things light in the locker room. I could be way off base with this, but I think Andrew Peters might be a pretty decent guy.
All that said, Kate’s Favorite Player can NOT be a sucky enforcer.
Andrew Peters, you are out. Auf Wiedershen!
Thomas Vanek #26
I really thought that once I wrote a letter explaining my anger, I would be able to forgive Thomas Vanek for his recent slutty behavior. Well, it turns out I’m just not ready. I am certain that once the season begins and TV gets an opportunity to earn his contract, he will find a way back into my good graces, but for now, he is going to have to live with the fact that he is being cut from the Favorite Sabre Competition in the same round as Dmitri Kalinin and Andrew Peters.
We reap what we sow, Thomas. (Oh, and congratulations on the birth of your son.)
Round three is complete! The competition is heating up as we get closer and closer to the start of hockey season. Stay tuned to learn who’s dreams will be dashed, and who will ultimately be crowned: KATE’S FAVORITE SABRE!!!!